April 08, 2013 at 09:39
Where do you buy your seeds?
I live in Melbourne and I'm wondering where the best places to find heirloom seeds are? Farmer's market? Local nursery?
I am a big fan of Eden Seeds. Their website is very 1990s but their range is great and their prices are good too. You can often find Eden Seeds at the more hippy-ish gardening places and organic food co-ops and similar. For instance they have them at CERES in Brunswick, and I saw that Friends of the Earth food co-op had them at the Sustainable Living Festival when I was there. I get almost all my seeds from them, mostly through an online order a couple of times a year, with a bit extra from CERES when I visit.
Lots of people seem to like the Diggers Club but I'm scared that if I buy a membership I'll overspend, and if I don't buy a membership then the prices aren't as good as Eden's. But they do have live plants for things that don't grow well from seed, so I'm still considering it.
I don't know exactly what your definition of "heirloom" is but another option I've seen is that many Italian delis have a rack of seeds with traditional Italian vegetable varieties. Most of them have English descriptions on the back (the ones I was looking at the other day at Preston market even offered a note that "If in Australia, planting times are rotated by six months"). So if you are into that style of food, I'd say it's definitely worth looking into.
I've bought seeds from Eden Seeds and Diggers Club, which Skud mentioned. I also buy a lot from Green Harvest, and also occasionally from The Italian Gardener, All Rare Herbs and The Lost Seed.
I do most of my seed-buying online (which is a good part of the reason I have so many seeds - so much easier to buy 10 packets when they're not physically in front of you), but I've also seen heirloom seeds for sale at CERES and Bulleen Art and Garden. I haven't seen many at farmer's markets.
I'd be happy to swap or give you seeds, too, if there's anything in particular you're after. I have thousands more seeds than I'll be able to plant before they expire, and would much rather they got grown than wasted! I'll put up a list of my seeds somewhere and comment back here with a link when I've done it.
I bough some through Digger's Club, thanks to getting a membership for my birthday that year... I was pretty pleased with what I got (although I lacked on the follow through...) I do like that they do plants as well—and that the site is pretty well designed for those of us in the west (with quarantine issues), so we don't accidentally order something they can't ship:-)
@fireandhemlock (and anyone else in Melbourne or around about), I put up a list of seeds I'd be happy to swap or give away, if any take your fancy. Just let me know if you would like any and I can post them to you or meet up for a swap.
@Meg that looks like a feature we should have here on Growstuff! I know Ravelry has something similar for yarn stash. *ponders*
@Skud that would be awesome!
Folia has a matchmaking wishlist/swapping function for seed and start trades... the tough part is that many users don't keep their swappable stash listings updated, and also... not everyone is willing or able to ship internationally.
(I wish I had good advice about heirloom seeds in Melbourne... all of my favorite suppliers are in the US and therefore shipping would probably be expensive/impractical.)
over 8 years